Presenting Charlie Brear’s #FridayBridE Anais
This week's Bride Anais takes us through her and her husband William's stunning wedding. Our bride wanted her guests to feel valued and comfortable first and foremost. Using their creative skills the beautiful couple created a wonderful understated styled wedding with an intimate celebration.The couple live in London and it was important for them to have a day that was true to their passion for the city and celebration of East London. Keep reading to hear about Anais's planning process and her wonderful ~#bridalhacks.
When and where did your partner propose to you?
We'd just had our 7th anniversary in 2016 and it was our first day on holiday in Sardinia, our favourite summer holiday destination. He drove me out on a boat first thing in the morning (I wondered what was causing the urgency!), and we stopped the boat off the shore of one of the most beautiful beaches in Europe, Cala Goloritze, a beach that we have great memories of. We had the anchor down taking in the incredible view on the quiet sea and he popped the question with a beautiful Asscher cut diamond ring he'd had made.
Which dress did you choose and why?
And where did you buy it from? I didn’t plan to, but I ended up choosing two outfits from Charlie Brear, one was a very simple strapless sheath dress (Tavaline) I’d known when I first started looking that I wanted something extremely minimal but timeless, the dress was the first one I tried on. The unusual loose, boxy, draped style and simple neckline really stood out to me. The other was a very exciting jumpsuit! I’d never thought of a wedding jumpsuit before, but when I saw it it was love. I’ve never been a girly girl and it was such a stylish statement and so suited my style - I knew I had to wear it for the party and the gold belt was the finishing touch. Buying my dress at Charlie Brear felt like a really personal experience.
How was your experience shopping for your wedding dress? ( was it easy, was it memorable, was it fun?, was the decision tough?) After months of dragging friends and family around dress shops getting snow-blind (even in New York, which was fantastic fun!) the second time I visited Charlie Brear's London studio I went alone. The girls who helped me were fantastic, they had great taste and could see that I knew what I wanted, and were able to share in my vision. They were very honest and encouraged me to go for it and take the plunge with the jumpsuit when I wasn’t sure if I should have two outfits, as they could see that although I wanted to wear a dress down the aisle, the jumpsuit had really captured my heart and they didn't want me to lose it.
What would your advice be to other brides shopping for a wedding dress?
Trust your instincts, try not to be swayed by opinions that differ to your personal taste, and make sure you’ll be comfortable - the wedding can be quite overwhelming and it’s a long hectic day, the last thing you need is to feel like you can’t wait to get out of your dress.
How did you feel after you had ordered your dress?
So relieved and excited for the big day.
What shoes did you wear?
I wore a pair of green velvet Miu Miu platforms – (for added height!). Again, it was love at first sight and I had comfort in mind, platforms are great if you’re short but don't want uncomfortably high heels.
Did you struggle finding the right lingerie that worked with your dress, if so would you recommend anything for future brides?
The dress was corseted inside and really secure, so I just wore Spanx underneath the dress to make sure the silky fabric looked smooth. The jumpsuit was so easy to wear, I only needed flesh-tone underwear with that. I’d recommend going for something that makes you feel confident and comfortable, make sure you take a few options to your fitting too to really see if it will work the way you're imagining it.
Who did your hair & make-up and how did you find them?
A friend of a friend, Lauren Naylor did my makeup and arranged my hair stylist. I’d worked in fashion and lifestyle magazines for quite some time, and eventually moved into the beauty industry so I was lucky enough to have a few good contacts I could ask advice from. She was great to have with us on the day and made my bridesmaids look like angels! We still swap beauty knowledge every now and then.
Where and when did you get married?
Town Hall Hotel in Bethnal Green, and then over the road to Sager and Wilde for the reception.
How did you feel walking down the aisle?
Just so emotional! I walked down the aisle to Holocene by Bon Iver, which is a really memorable song for us. I was just so shocked to see all my beautiful friends and family looking back at me, then I saw my groom Will grinning from ear to ear, it was just an incredible moment I couldn’t have imagined. I felt privileged and very lucky. My dad was a hero, he gave me some calming wise words before our descent and made sure I didn’t bolt towards Will at my usual stride.
What traditions did you follow? (Think something old, new, borrowed and blue.)
Ours was a very casual wedding, we didn’t really follow many traditional rules. I wore my grandmother’s gold bracelet, it was important to have a piece of her memory with me.
Did your wedding have any quirky or unusual features?
The groomsmen popped two pyrotechnic-grade confetti cannons into the air at the end of our confetti walk! It really added some humour and made a few people jump as well.
What was the funniest moment of the day?
Rich, our best man delivered a really funny speech, and in really good taste! The jokes about Will’s hangry moments were spot on. People laughed and cried their way through all our speeches. Also, I didn’t see this with my own eyes (though I wish I had) but I’ve been informed that my super-fit friend Christina carried our enormous flower arrangement all the way from the ceremony to the restaurant! Thanks Chris, what would we have done without your guns?!
TAKE 5 WITH THIS WEEK’S #FRIDAYBRIDE
Ask for help and advice from friends who’ve planned a wedding before but don’t be afraid to do things your own way.
This is very general but during planning if something doesn’t feel right, if you feel like something's not working or you're not getting what you asked for trust your instincts and say something.
Try not to take on extra little tasks in the run up to the wedding, try to relax and enjoy the last few days.
I tried to keep the word "marriage" in the forefront of my mind when planning, and on the day, rather than "wedding". It helped me to stay focus on the true purpose of the day, despite all the thought and effort we put into the aesthetics and details.
Take a deep breath and walk s-l-o-w-l-y down the aisle, it's going to be an incredible day!
Who took your wedding pictures? The Curries, they’re a super talented, brilliant couple we’re pleased to call new friends, we were amazed at how well they captured the feelings of the day and they were a joy to have with us.
If you could do it all again, would you do anything differently? It was so perfect, everything ran smoothly and we had the absolute best time! The only thing I’d maybe do differently is that my hair stylist cancelled on the day due to sickness, thankfully we had replacement, but the poor stylist wasn’t privy to my previous hair trial or conversations about my hair so on the day we had to do it twice, so it all dropped out. I should have made what I wanted clearer. My bridesmaids' hair was truly gorgeous though.
Did you find organising your wedding an easy process? What parts were easy and what parts were trickier? Will and I are both creative, and we’re a really good team. He’s always keen to get involved and more than happy to help with everything, including the wedding, so that made everything much easier to manage. I work as a graphic designer and art director, so picking the colours, styling and designing the invitations and website was simple for us. Finding a venue small enough to cater for our selective guest list was actually trickier than we imagined, as most wedding venues cater for 100+ guests, but we were keen to keep things small and invite 50-60 guests. In our search for the perfect-capacity restaurant Will stumbled across Sager + Wilde and enquired about weddings, they just so happened to serve the most delicious food and wine, so we were sold. I’m also lucky enough to have two highly talented close friends who are the part-time wedding planning team Union & Co! Getting them on board for advice on the technicalities, preparation and styling was a no-brainer. I think the seating plan was the most difficult thing to get right, it’s like a mensa puzzle and nobody can really help you, you have to crack it yourself.
What will you do with your dress now? I'm going to keep hold of my dress for the future, though I'm yet to get it dry cleaned! The jumpsuit will most definitely be worn again at the first available opportunity.
What are you and your husband's best memories of the day? We both count seeing each other at the aisle as our favourite memory, seeing his face as I walked towards him was a beautiful moment and I couldn't wait to get to the top and hug him! The speeches and the private moments when we stole away from the crowd for a few quiet minutes for photographs were also a highlight - we got to have a good chat and share our joy! When I saw all our bridesmaids come out in their outfits, bouquets in hand lined up ready to walk down the aisle it blew my mind, everything was really coming together, for me that moment was the culmination of all the anticipation and work we'd put in - it was really happening!
Ceremony Venue - Town Hall Hotel & Apartments
Reception Venue - Sager + Wilde Paradise Row
Photographer/Videographer - The Curries
Shoes & Accessories - Net-a-porter
Bridesmaids' Dresses - Asos
Rings - Hatton Garden and Malta
Entertainment Home- Made playlist!
Cake Supplier Made by a talented friend
Hair & Make-up - boudoirbrides.net
Anais WAS A VISION In a Mainline collection dress
Browse our Bridal Collection to find a style like 's dress and see many more options
Did you catch last week's friday bride, jo?
Our cool bride walked down the aisle in an Mainline Collection dress